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Tiki Central Forums » » Tiki Events » » California Events » » Rapa Nui Benefit- Hollywood
Rapa Nui Benefit- Hollywood
oni_baba
Member

Joined: Oct 25, 2010
Posts: 3
From: hawaii
Posted: 2010-10-25 6:34 pm   Permalink



http://saverapanui.org/benefit.html (Easter Island)

I was just introduced to this site by those who attended the Tikifarm 10th anniversary. Billy from La Luz de Jesus gallery was generous to allow me to solicit information about an upcoming benefit that will place some international attention on the current Rapanui struggle to re-settle their homeland on Rapa Nui (easter island). The Rapanui people are an endangered people and Chile has a reputation for political kidnappings and disappearances. We want to ensure that this struggle is peaceful and without incident.

There have been donations by La Luz de Jesus gallery, Sven Kirsten, SHAG, TikiRay, Francisco Letelier. Also, these RARE PETROGLYPH RUBBINGS are also up for auction and will be on display: http://saverapanui.org/art.html

please follow the link for more info.


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oni_baba

[ This Message was edited by: oni_baba 2010-10-25 20:13 ]


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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11003
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2010-10-26 10:54 am   Permalink

I am glad I will be able to attend this benefit and contribute in a small way. The history of "Easter Island" has been the inspiration for so many FOREIGN theories, from Thor Heyerdahl to recent media blitzes, but it is most interesting to actually hear the side of the Rapanui people themselves:

>>Rapanui, aka Easter Island, is NOT uninhabited and the supposed mysteries of the island can be simply explained by the Rapanui people who have lived there over 2000 years.
The Rapanui people carved and moved the Moai by “walking” the moai with rounded bottoms.
The Rapanui people did NOT deforest the island to move the Moai, there was a "mini" ice age in the 1400s which reduced trees on the island, rats introduced by foreign boats ate the seeds, and the Chileans rented the island to sheep farmers whose herds destroyed the roots of the flora causing massive run off of the topsoil, and the Rapanui people were sold as slaves. <<

And also raise the world's awareness of continuing injustices being done to them:

>>The Chileans are still colonizing the island and continuing to destroy the ancient archaeological sites which have been designated by UNESCO as a “patrimony to humanity.”
The Chileans are encouraging unchecked immigration to the island, which does not have the infrastructure to support immigration.
The Rapanui people today are in danger of extinction.<<

For me as a pop culture historian it is also a fitting coincidence that the event takes place on the site of a temple of 20th Century "modern primitivism", a prime example of Mayan Revival Style, which I see as a predecessor to Tiki style (see Tiki Modern page 109):

>>Aline Barnsdall's family built an empire from their endeavors in the oil industry, which allowed her the luxury of commissioning Frank Lloyd Wright to design this marvelous construction. The house embodies the recurring theme of Mayan Revivalism found in many of Wright's other projects - known for using large stones, introverted windows, courtyards, and ornately designed accompaniments.<<

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y67lhvjPeqs

This building is an example of how an "exotic" culture that had been destroyed by Westerners has inspired and was resurrected by a 20th Century artist. The parallels to Easter Island are indeed noteworthy:

After Mayan culture had passed it peak, it was crushed by Spanish invaders, and its population decisively decimated by their infectious diseases - just like the people of Rapa Nui (and the Marquesans, and so on)

The Mayan codices have been poured over by archeologists and researchers just like the Rongo Rongo tablets

The amazing stone sculptures of both civilizations have fascinated generations of Western scientists and artists

We should take any opportunity offered to not just enjoy the Western romanticization of an ancient culture, but support its descendants wherever we can, not merely contribute to its trivialization. I enjoy Tiki as a pop culture, but believe that it carries the creative spark of its original Polynesian roots in it, thus perpetuating its tradition in a positive, not only trivial manner.

Sven Kirsten


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oni_baba
Member

Joined: Oct 25, 2010
Posts: 3
From: hawaii
Posted: 2010-10-26 12:09 pm   Permalink

Quote:


We should take any opportunity offered to not just enjoy the Western romanticization of an ancient culture, but support its descendants wherever we can, not merely contribute to its trivialization. I enjoy Tiki as a pop culture, but believe that it carries the creative spark of its original Polynesian roots in it, thus perpetuating its tradition in a positive, not only trivial manner.




There had actually been reservations by a couple people who thought that the inclusion of tiki-pop was a distraction to the event. However, Santi Hitorangi-- the rapanui representative who will be speaking at this event-- stepped up and wanted to include those whose art payed tribute to the indigenous peoples' work. "Solidarity," he said,"was the purpose of this benefit." Another of the event's sponsors wisely said, "let us walk in humility with those who will walk with us..."

The most amazing thing about participating with this event so far, is being reminded of how many righteous people there are in this city.

I want to thank Sven for his insight into recognizing the role that those in the tiki community can play towards the preservation of a living tradition, and I think he will be pleased to see how the Moai walked, rather than the "archeologist's view that the rapanui cut down their trees to move the moai..."

arnie


 
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Grand Kahu
Grand Member (2 years)  

Joined: Jul 31, 2006
Posts: 176
From: Dallas, TX
Posted: 2010-10-26 12:36 pm   Permalink

As to the Barnsdall house, keep in mind Wright never formally acknowledged the influence of Mayan architecture or art upon it, but it has remained, at least to my own studies of it, resonant with his admiration of "primitive peoples" and their own respect of "Nature." It's something of a twist on the usual exoticism of the 19th century; Wright so stylized the forms as to not be readily identifiable as Mayan or Aztec, but instead filtered them through his broader knowledge of proto-modernist designs to come up with the result that is the Barnsdall. His version of Mayan Modern (ala Tiki Modern), so to speak. And, I have felt, instead of suggesting the exotic, he was more so interested in suggesting was was native to the land and to America -- what better way to do so than to reference (silently) indigenous architecture? His son Lloyd was more forthcoming about the influence of Native American art upon their work.

OK, back to your regularly scheduled programming now...

GK
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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11003
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2010-10-26 1:31 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2010-10-26 12:09, oni_baba wrote:
There had actually been reservations by a couple people who thought that the inclusion of tiki-pop was a distraction to the event. However, Santi Hitorangi-- the rapanui representative who will be speaking at this event-- stepped up and wanted to include those whose art payed tribute to the indigenous peoples' work.



That is wonderful to hear. I understand the reservations, for the general populace often confuses indigenous art and American Tiki culture, but I wholeheartedly agree that Polynesian Pop is a TRIBUTE to Polynesian culture, however shallow and trivial it may seem to some Polynesians. The key factor to me is that I believe that American Tiki was primarily inspired by a LOVE for Polynesian history and culture, and not by any colonial, chauvinist or racist beliefs, and that it created a previously unrecognized body of creative work, no matter its lack of depth and understanding of its origins.

The Moderns like Picasso, Man Ray and Andre Breton did not really study the religious background of the African and Oceanic art pieces that inspired them to change the face of Western art, but it is clearly to the credit of these indigenous art forms that it happened, and proof of their power, and a sign that an intermingling of cultures leads to new realizations and insights.

Also, in terms of Tiki Pop, I believe that a sense of humor regarding a culture and a sense of respect towards it do not necessarily exclude each other.

Grand Kahu, thank you for your information regarding Frank Lloyd Wright not accepting his work as part of Mayan revival style. I am sure that as soon as he learned that there were other architects dabbling in Mayan and Aztec design (especially crazies like Robert Stacy Judd) he carefully avoided to be thrown in the pot with them, insisting on it all being completely his own ideas. But his sources and the synchronicity of it all are undeniable.


 
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MadDogMike
Grand Member (6 years)  

Joined: Mar 30, 2008
Posts: 7075
From: The Anvil of the Sun
Posted: 2010-10-26 4:15 pm   Permalink

Sven, thanks for the info about the Little Ice Age I was unaware of that theory for the deforestation of Rapa Nui.

I wonder if Al Gore's handlers have told him about the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age? Maybe our current warming trend is part of a historical cycle and has nothing to do with ozone depletion


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OceaOtica
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 29, 2003
Posts: 898
From: la, home of Tiki Ti
Posted: 2010-10-27 6:53 pm   Permalink

I was able to meet with Santi and Arnie the other evening and was happy to donate two Moai mugs to the fundraiser. I can not make the event but hope it raises money and awareness. I too had reservations about donating the mugs as the one is a more colorful (glaze wise) take on the Moai but Santi in talking shortly seemed to recognize that the mug was created in appreciation of the art and culture. Sven, and others attending, I look forward to reading about the evening.

[ This Message was edited by: oceaotica 2010-10-28 19:42 ]


 
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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11003
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2010-10-28 4:31 pm   Permalink

This event will be an opportunity to show that we are interested in the reality of Polynesian culture today, your entrance fee will help the real thing.



It will be very interesting to hear the answer to the question James Teitelbaum opens up chapter 9 of his seminal work on Moai pop culture, "Big Stone Head": "How do the Easter Islanders feel about all this?"



Also, just down the hill from the Frank Lloyd Wright temple where this takes place, in convenient walking distance, lies the Tiki Ti, a good source for further "inspiration"



 
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PiPhiRho
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 1004
From: Redondo Beach
Posted: 2010-10-28 4:58 pm   Permalink

Having been there, I got the distinct impression that the Rapanui do not consider the Moai to be "tikis". Tikis come from the Marquesas and Hawaii. They seem to consider the Moai to be something quite different from those.

That was my impression anyway. I wish I could be there tonight, but getting there by 6PM through LA traffic after work on a Thursday is a daunting prospect.


 
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